Review: BINGE by Tyler Oakley

binge review

Title: Binge
Author: Tyler Oakley
Genre: Autobiography

The first thing I’d like to point out is the name, ‘Binge’, is beyond apt for this book. Why? Because I stayed up until 6am to finish the book. That never happens unless it’s a book I highly enjoy. So, spoiler alert, I liked the book and this indeed is a positive review!

After my meeting with Tyler on Monday, I headed straight home from the signing, changed into my pyjamas (because it’s important to be feeling comfortable when reading. It’s an unwritten rule. Or for me, at least) and headed up into my room in which I settled down to indulge in the story of Tyler Oakley (or is he? You’ll learn his birth name in the beginning and I wasn’t even expecting it.)

Binge is a numerous amount of essays compiled by its author about many highlighted moments in his life in which he felt was something necessary to share with his fans (or as he calls them, his people) and each chapter was definitely something I could either relate to personally or knew someone else who would be able to. From being a member of the LGBTQ+ community to first loves and experiences in his life in education, everything Tyler discusses is something that someone, somewhere will be able to connect with. Instead of your typical life story from beginning to now, Tyler talks about issues and experiences that it is greatly known that young people are dealing with right at this very moment. To me, that was the importance of this book – knowing that whatever it is you have or are experiencing, you are not alone. Even those you idolise have had a walk of life which you may be able to find similarities in and if not, it can make you more aware for those who can. For example, being a heterosexual, though hearing stories on the news and through social media, I am never able to say I have experienced homophobia or coming out. Thanks to this book, written by someone I admire, it momentarily put me in the author’s shoes and I could feel just a slight bit of emotion that he may have felt himself and it gave me a better understanding (though, of course, I will never fully understand as previously stated, it’s not something I will experience) for those I care about that have lived through a similar situation.

The book isn’t solely based on deep issues and experiences, though, and has a lot of light hearted chapters such as “Beyonce for a Day” and “What Michelle Obama Smells Like” which were fun to read as Oakley’s personality definitely shone through.

Would I recommend this book to a person who is not a fan of Tyler? Maybe. If you’re interested in getting to know the YouTube personality, then by all means, read it. But if you’re just looking for something to read, you may not be able to appreciate the book as a whole written by someone you’re not fully aware about. Which, personally, is my view with a lot of autobiographies.

I laughed, I cried and, most importantly, I learned. The book was full of great lessons and shared experiences by Tyler and is ideal for any of his fans. I’d definitely say it’s inspiring and is an advocate for young people growing up to say “hey, I’ve been there. And it will get better,” regardless of the situation.

Overall, I definitely enjoyed the book and really hope Tyler will release another book sometime in the future.

Have you read Binge? Got any books to recommend? Leave a comment below!

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Jazz is a Disney, tea and pop culture enthusiast with a passion for blogging. Also a proud introvert.

I met (YouTube) royalty! – Tyler Oakley's book tour

i met youtube royalty

Tyler Oakley is a pop culture phenomenon, YouTube celebrity and social rights activist with over 7.69 million YouTube subscribers, and 458 million views as of August 2015. Oakley recently released his debut book, ‘Binge’, before indulging on a 21 city book tour across America and the UK. Surprisingly, one of those cities included Cardiff, the capital city of my little country of residence, Wales. And guess who had a ticket to meet the man himself?

Tyler Oakley binge

The ticket was a birthday present from my beloved older cousin and something I had been highly anticipating for the past two months. Finally, Monday 2nd November had graced us with its presence and I could hardly wait.

Tyler and his book publishers are working with Maximum Pop! at the moment and so this was a perfect opportunity for me to tweet out via the Twitter about the signing. On the way to the venue with my friend, Ellen, and her mother, Tyler tweeted about his arrival in Cardiff, which I took as an excellent opportunity to tweet from the MP account announcing that we were on our way. Moments later, my friend, Alysha, texted me frantically “DID TYLER JUST TWEET YOU?”  

I don’t have the notifications from the MP account’s mentions on my phone because quite frankly there are way too many and I’m not usually one of the people to run the account. I checked the account to see our interactions exploding with more mentions than usual. That’s when I saw the followng:

Um, excuse me? Did he just call me Queen? Me?! I may have fangirled. Just a little bit. Or a lotta bit. But I tried to keep it internal.

After a quick two hours of queuing and what seemed like a conga line around a maze, we were minutes away from meeting Tyler.  We were in the first barrier and around about number 70 in the queue, so our wait time was pretty minimal. I had previously picked up a Welsh chocoloate lollipop which had the word “cwtch” (meaning hug in Welsh) iced on the front and a Welsh celtic bracelet with a dragon on it, with one for myself to match, to give to Tyler. The security put the presents in the box which would be given to Tyler at the end of the signing and I stood behind Ellen and her mother, who were next in line.

Tyler

Ellen was bewildered with excitement and asked Tyler for a “cwtch” before explaining what it meant.  He gladly obliged before taking a selfie with her. After meeting her mother, it was finally my turn. My heart was pounding.

“Hey!”
“Hey cutie!”
“Thanks for calling me queen, I’m from maximum pop!”
“Oh hey queen!”
“Can I get a cwtch?”
“Sure!”
“Thanks!”
“No problem! Thank you for coming, I’ll talk to you online in like a minute!”

Tyler Oakley and I

Tyler took multiple photos on my phone but the one above is the best. After quick encounter, I left the store with Ellen, full of excitement after our meeting with the YouTube personality who despite becoming a household name is still rather humble. What a day.

I really enjoyed meeting Tyler and I’m about halfway through reading his book, which I have every intention of reviewing on my blog very soon, so keep your eyes peeled!

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Jazz is a Disney, tea and pop culture enthusiast with a passion for blogging. Also a proud introvert.